A Travel Price Comparison for Australia Surfers Paradise vs. Katoomba for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Surfers Paradise or Katoomba?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Surfers Paradise or Katoomba, this travel cost comparison can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Surfers Paradise

A tourist mecca, Surfers Paradise is one of the most popular travel destinations along Australia's famed Gold Coast. The beach stretches for miles and there is an endless supply of almost constant parties. You'll find high rise apartments lined up along the shore and plenty of shopping areas, restaurants, nightclubs, and bars. Travelers from around the world visit the area, and it's a right of passage for Australia's teens to vacation in or near Surfers Paradise. For many travelers, Surfers Paradise comes across as little more than a mass marketed, over commercialized, party destination, but for others it is a vacation dream. Prices are highly inflated so you have to keep your whits about you to avoid being ripped off. Surfers Paradise is a destination of extremes and it conjures up extreme emotions in many travelers, be it positive or negative.

Katoomba

Designated an UNESCO World Heritage site in 2000, the Blue Mountains are located just west of Sydney in the highlands of New South Wales, Australia.

This area can be generally expensive, but is on par with other destinations in Australia and around Sydney. Plenty of luxury places can be found here that cost more than average, but plenty of cheaper places to stay can be found here, too. Expect to pay for various activities such as tours and entrance fees, too.

The landscape is sprawling with majestic scenery over a rugged terrain of steep cliffs, forests, waterfalls, and villages. Whether you come to hike, climb, bike, or drive to the scenic viewpoints, a curtain of tranquility falls upon the mountains in a blue haze from which they get their name.

Which city is cheaper, Katoomba or Surfers Paradise?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Surfers Paradise is $94, while the average daily cost in Katoomba is $122. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Surfers Paradise and Katoomba in more detail.



Accommodation

The prices for places to stay in Surfers Paradise can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $60, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $120.

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $140 for a double occupancy room in Katoomba.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Surfers Paradise $60
    Katoomba $70
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Surfers Paradise $120
    Katoomba $140

Food

Food in Surfers Paradise costs travelers about $24 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.

The average traveler spends about $16 per day in Katoomba for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Surfers Paradise $24
    Katoomba $16

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Surfers Paradise

For Surfers Paradise, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Surfers Paradise Sunset Kayak and Dinner: $40
  • Private Pizza Making Class in Hunter Valley: $48
  • Pizza Paddle Sunset Kayak Tour in Bateman's Bay: $66
  • Dinner Buffet Cruise on the Gold Coast: $70
  • Dinner Cruise at Sydney Harbour with Optional Mast Climb Experience: $72
  • Cairns Dinner Cruise by Spirit of Cairns: $73
  • Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner Show Ticket: $74
  • Charles Darwin Dinner Cruise: $75
  • Sydney Harbour Sunset Dinner Cruise by Captain Cook: $77
  • Dumpling Cooking Class in Melbourne: $80
  • Cairns Aquarium Twilight Tour with 3-Course Dinner: $88
  • Pinnacles Sunset Dinner and Stargazing Tour: $109

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Katoomba

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Katoomba.

  • Private Pizza Making Class in Hunter Valley: $48
  • Pizza Paddle Sunset Kayak Tour in Bateman's Bay: $66
  • Dinner Cruise at Sydney Harbour with Optional Mast Climb Experience: $72
  • Cairns Dinner Cruise by Spirit of Cairns: $73
  • Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner Show Ticket: $74
  • Charles Darwin Dinner Cruise: $75
  • Sydney Harbour Sunset Dinner Cruise by Captain Cook: $77
  • Dumpling Cooking Class in Melbourne: $80
  • Cairns Aquarium Twilight Tour with 3-Course Dinner: $88
  • Pinnacles Sunset Dinner and Stargazing Tour: $109
  • Private Cooking School in the Hunter Valley: $114
  • Mexican Cooking Class in Melbourne: $122

Local Transportation

Surfers Paradise's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $10 per person, per day on transportation in Surfers Paradise.

The cost of a taxi ride in Katoomba is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $45 per person, per day, on local transportation in Katoomba.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Surfers Paradise $10
    Katoomba $45

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Surfers Paradise

Also for Surfers Paradise, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Shared City Transfers from Darwin to Stokes Hill Wharf: $6.65
  • SkyBus Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) Express Transfer Ticket: $11
  • Shared Sunshine Coast Airport Transfers (MCY) for Sunshine Coast: $12
  • Shared Cairns Airport Transfer (CNS) from and to Cairns, Port Douglas, Palm Cove: $13
  • Shared Sydney Airport Transfers (SYD) for Sydney: $13
  • Gold Coast Theme Parks: Shared Hotel Transfers: $13
  • Hobart International Airport (HBA) Express Bus Transfers by SkyBus: $14
  • Sea World Shared Shuttle Transfer from Gold Coast Hotels: $15
  • Shared Brisbane Airport Transfers (BNE) for Brisbane : $15
  • Avalon Airport (AVV) Express Transfer by SkyBus for Melbourne City: $15
  • Shared Gold Coast Airport Transfers (OOL) for Gold Coast: $17
  • Paradise Country Shared Shuttle Transfer from Gold Coast Hotels: $18

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Katoomba

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Katoomba:

  • [Promotion: Adult at Kids Price] Hot Air Balloon Experience with Round-trip Transfers & Vineyard Champagne Breakfast in Gold Coast: $191
  • [Promotion: Adult at Kids Price] Hot Air Balloon Experience in Cairns with Round-trip Transfers: $176
  • Wet'n'Wild Return Shared Shuttle Transfer from Gold Coast Hotels: $18
  • Thredbo Day Trip with Round Trip Transfer from Sydney by Brighton Coach: $81
  • SkyBus Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) Express Transfer Ticket: $11
  • Shared Sydney Airport Transfers (SYD) for Sydney: $13
  • Shared Sunshine Coast Airport Transfers (MCY) for Sunshine Coast: $12
  • Shared Shuttle Bus Transfers from Kings Canyon to Alice Springs: $133
  • Shared Shuttle Bus Transfers between Ayers Rock and Kings Canyon: $110
  • Shared Shuttle Bus Transfers between Alice Springs and Ayers Rock: $133
  • Shared Perth Airport (PER) Transfers for Perth and Fremantle: $22
  • Shared Gold Coast Airport Transfers (OOL) for Gold Coast: $17

Is it cheaper to fly into Surfers Paradise or Katoomba?

Prices for flights to both Katoomba and Surfers Paradise change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Entertainment

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Surfers Paradise can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $21 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

Entertainment and activities in Katoomba typically cost an average of $48 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Surfers Paradise $21
    Katoomba $48
Typical Entertainment prices in Surfers Paradise

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Surfers Paradise's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Surf Lesson
    $88

Tours and Activities in Surfers Paradise

For Surfers Paradise, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • North Stradbroke Island Water Taxi Ferry Ticket: $7.95
  • Searoad Ferry Tickets between Queenscliff and Sorrento: $8.85
  • Bridestowe Lavender Estate Tour: $8.85
  • Koala Conservation Reserve Tickets in Phillip Island: $9.95
  • Hunter Valley Wine Theatre Experience: $11
  • Margaret River Region Lighthouse Tours: $11
  • Sydney Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour with Mobile App: $12
  • Melbourne Sports Lovers Tours: $13
  • Kuranda Bird World General Admission Ticket in Cairns: $13
  • Private Hunter Valley Wine Barrel Rolling Experience: $13
  • Kuranda Koala Gardens General Admission Ticket in Cairns: $13
  • Phillip Island Chocolate Factory Ticket: $13

Tours and Activities in Katoomba

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Katoomba are as follows:

  • Abseiling Adventure in Adelaide : $73
  • Half Day Kayak Tour in Bateman's Bay + FREE Paddle Pack: $95
  • Hunter Valley Scenic Wine and Cheese Tour from Sydney: $125
  • Nowra Treetop and Zipline Adventure: $32
  • Yarra Valley Hot Air Balloon Flight and Winery Tour: $385
  • 'Have a Go' Clay Target Shooting Experience in Brisbane: $110
  • 12 Apostles, Otways & Great Ocean Road Hiking Adventure from Melbourne: $132
  • 1D1N Kangaroo Island Road to Recovery Tour: $514
  • 2D Best of Tasmania Sightseeing Tour: Hobart & Bruny Island : $126
  • 2D Ultimate Marine Adventure from Port Lincoln: $405
  • 2D1N Reefsleep Under the Stars Great Barrier Experience: $416
  • 2D1N at the Wilderness Lodge with Walking Tours of Bungles and Cathedral Gorge: $1,068

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Surfers Paradise spend on average $10 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Surfers Paradise $10
    Katoomba -

Sample the Local Flavors in Surfers Paradise

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Surfers Paradise:

  • Savannah Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Hunter’s Dream Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Misty Glen Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Tintilla Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Pokolbin Estate Wine Tasting Experience: $3.69
  • Tempus Two Wine Tasting Experience: $3.69
  • Hanging Tree Wines Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Capercaillie Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Red Door Collective Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley (Adults Only): $7.39
  • Hungerford Hill Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley : $7.39
  • Talits Estate Cellar Door Wine Tasting Experience: $7.39
  • Wine Tasting at Wine House in Hunter Valley: $7.39

Sample the Local Flavors in Katoomba

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Katoomba:

  • Savannah Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Tempus Two Wine Tasting Experience: $3.69
  • Hanging Tree Wines Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Capercaillie Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Misty Glen Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Tintilla Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Hunter’s Dream Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Pokolbin Estate Wine Tasting Experience: $3.69
  • Wine Tasting at Horner Wines in Hunter Valley: $7.39
  • Talits Estate Cellar Door Wine Tasting Experience: $7.39
  • Wine Tasting at Wine House in Hunter Valley: $7.39
  • Glandore Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $7.39


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Surfers Paradise and Katoomba, we can see that Katoomba is more expensive. And not only is Surfers Paradise much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Surfers Paradise would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Surfers Paradise and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Katoomba would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Katoomba than you might in Surfers Paradise.

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Surfers Paradise vs. Katoomba Travel Comparison

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